We have some top tips from Chris Roberts, Level 4 Rehabilitation Therapist and Sports Conditioning expert on Behalf of Biofreeze.
How long should you leave an injury before applying cryotherapy items such as Biofreeze?
An injury should be assessed by a professional before any sort of topical therapy should be applied.
How long after running a marathon would you recommend trying to run again?
I would recommend waiting 48 hours post-event before running again. It’s important to participate in a form of post-event recovery program to maintain base levels of fitness and minimise injury post-event.
What are the most common injuries you see occur post-marathon?
The injuries I most commonly see post-event are Runner’s Knee, Achilles Tendonitis, Hamstring Issues and Iliotibial Band Syndrome (ITBS). Most of these injuries can be treated with a combination of cryotherapy, deep tissue massage and myofascial release.
What are the best ways to avoid injuries during the race?
I would recommend pre-event massage and an effective warm-up routine. It’s also important to remember that diet plays a large part in issues such as muscle cramps and advice can be sought from nutritional experts and dietitians.
Is it possible for the initial injury strain post-race to seem worse than the ultimate issue occurring?
It is certainly possible. It’s important to follow a post-event recovery program or an athlete can show signs of overtraining. This, in turn, can mask injuries which can then become worse over time. The initial 48 hours post event is a good time to assess the body for potential injuries if they have gone unnoticed so far.
What other sports are good for replacing running during injury?
Cycling, walking, and swimming are good replacements for running whilst injured due to their low/non-impact natures.
Why is cryotherapy so essential for injury prevention?
Cryotherapy products are classified as topical analgesics, which work through a ‘counter irritant’ mechanism. This means that the Isopropyl Alcohol in Biofreeze creates a sensation that overrides pain signals to the brain. This process is known as ‘Gate Control Theory’, where nerve impulses from one stimulus block the nerves containing pain signals to the brain. The cold sensation also causes Vaso-constriction which aids in the prevention of injury by preventing swelling and irritation. It is important to remember that cryotherapy only provides temporary pain relief and is not a long-term solution if an injury does occur.